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No Surrender: A Father, a Son, and an Extraordinary Act of Heroism That Continues to Live on Today

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Spanning seven decades andlinking a sprawling cast of heroes from every corner of the country, No Surrenderis an unforgettable story of a father’s extraordinary acts of valor in the treacherous final days of World War II and a son’s journey to discover them. Like most members of the Greatest Generation, Roddie Edmonds, a humble American soldier from East Tennessee, rarely Spanning seven decades and linking a sprawling cast of heroes from every corner of the country, No Surrender is an unforgettable story of a father’s extraordinary acts of valor in the treacherous final days of World War II and a son’s journey to discover them. Like most members of the Greatest Generation, Roddie Edmonds, a humble American soldier from East Tennessee, rarely spoke about his experiences during World War II. Not even his son Chris—who always considered his father a hero—knew the full details of Roddie’s capture at the Battle of the Bulge or his captivity at Stalag IXA, a Nazi POW camp. But when Chris’s daughter was assigned a family history project, Chris reread Roddie’s wartime diaries, which set in motion a series of life-changing events. Called to learn his father’s story with a renewed sense of passion and purpose, Chris embarked on a years-long journey, interviewing surviving POWs under Roddie’s command, and retracing his father’s footsteps, from Fort Jackson, Georgia, where a boyish Roddie transformed into a seasoned leader of men, to the patch of grass near Zeigenhein, Germany, where he stared evil in the eye and dared a Nazi to shoot. Chris Edmonds, along with New York Times bestselling author Douglas Century, takes us to the front lines of this inspiring multigenerational story, revealing in gripping, novelistic detail Roddie’s previously untold heroism—and the lasting effects his bravery had on the lives of thousands, then and now. “What was most remarkable about my journey to discover what my father did during the war,” Chris writes, “was the realization that any one of us has the untapped potential to do something incredibly courageous. We all have the potential to change the world simply by standing up for what’s right.”  A quintessential American story of bravery, compassion, and righteousness, No Surrender is a shining example of the transformative and redemptive power of moral courage and a celebration of faith, family, and service, the very characteristics that continue to define us today.  


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Spanning seven decades andlinking a sprawling cast of heroes from every corner of the country, No Surrenderis an unforgettable story of a father’s extraordinary acts of valor in the treacherous final days of World War II and a son’s journey to discover them. Like most members of the Greatest Generation, Roddie Edmonds, a humble American soldier from East Tennessee, rarely Spanning seven decades and linking a sprawling cast of heroes from every corner of the country, No Surrender is an unforgettable story of a father’s extraordinary acts of valor in the treacherous final days of World War II and a son’s journey to discover them. Like most members of the Greatest Generation, Roddie Edmonds, a humble American soldier from East Tennessee, rarely spoke about his experiences during World War II. Not even his son Chris—who always considered his father a hero—knew the full details of Roddie’s capture at the Battle of the Bulge or his captivity at Stalag IXA, a Nazi POW camp. But when Chris’s daughter was assigned a family history project, Chris reread Roddie’s wartime diaries, which set in motion a series of life-changing events. Called to learn his father’s story with a renewed sense of passion and purpose, Chris embarked on a years-long journey, interviewing surviving POWs under Roddie’s command, and retracing his father’s footsteps, from Fort Jackson, Georgia, where a boyish Roddie transformed into a seasoned leader of men, to the patch of grass near Zeigenhein, Germany, where he stared evil in the eye and dared a Nazi to shoot. Chris Edmonds, along with New York Times bestselling author Douglas Century, takes us to the front lines of this inspiring multigenerational story, revealing in gripping, novelistic detail Roddie’s previously untold heroism—and the lasting effects his bravery had on the lives of thousands, then and now. “What was most remarkable about my journey to discover what my father did during the war,” Chris writes, “was the realization that any one of us has the untapped potential to do something incredibly courageous. We all have the potential to change the world simply by standing up for what’s right.”  A quintessential American story of bravery, compassion, and righteousness, No Surrender is a shining example of the transformative and redemptive power of moral courage and a celebration of faith, family, and service, the very characteristics that continue to define us today.  

30 review for No Surrender: A Father, a Son, and an Extraordinary Act of Heroism That Continues to Live on Today

  1. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Dunckley

    Decades after his father passed away, during a random Google search, Chris Edmonds discovers that his father is a hero. Roddie Edmonds was a Staff Sargent assigned to the 422nd Infantry Regiment of the 106th Infantry Division, who were shipped to Europe. They were stationed outside Saint. Vith near the Allied front, a position that was supposed to be light action, ideal for seasoning soldiers who hadn’t experienced combat before. Instead, they ended up where the Germans concentrated their forces. Decades after his father passed away, during a random Google search, Chris Edmonds discovers that his father is a hero. Roddie Edmonds was a Staff Sargent assigned to the 422nd Infantry Regiment of the 106th Infantry Division, who were shipped to Europe. They were stationed outside Saint. Vith near the Allied front, a position that was supposed to be light action, ideal for seasoning soldiers who hadn’t experienced combat before. Instead, they ended up where the Germans concentrated their forces. Hitler’s army readied their final military offensive, what would later be called the Battle of the Bulge. This was the 2nd most lethal battle fought by US military in history. The nonstop fighting started December 16th, and Edmond’s troops were captured by Nazis on December 19th. The Nazis had been massacring surrendering, unarmed men—killing soldiers, civilians, and POWs. From the moment the men were taken prisoner, it became clear that the Nazi soldiers had no intention of abiding by the Geneva Conventions—the International Standards for Treatment in War—including prohibitions against violence, cruel treatment, torture…and murder. (Incidentally, I learned that Germany’s actions, their intentional cruelty despite having signed the earlier Geneva Conventions, were a direct cause of the expansions of the Geneva Conventions articles in 1949!) Chris Edmonds had his father’s diaries from the war, the notebooks he’d written in while he was in the SS run POW camp—but at some point his father had torn out multiple pages. There were chopped off sentences and incomplete paragraphs, like “I enjoyed my last meal on the evening of the 17th, because the morning of” and then NOTHING! Missing pages, and then a paragraph that seemed unrelated, “…the reason I am writing this, mainly, is to relieve my mind, and while some of the events are fresh in my mind.” Chris had always wanted to know more, but it took on critical importance the day he read that 300 WWII veterans were passing away on a daily basis. Eventually they would all be gone, and the information would be lost forever. No one would know what happened. Chris starts on an odyssey to track down the remaining men that his father commanded, to find out what happened before it was too late. What Chris finds out is that his father is in fact a hero—a hero by ANY definition or accounting. WOW, what a book! It really made an impact on me—I don’t know if it’s just that, like Roddie Edmonds, these heroes don’t go around telling their tales, and so we don’t KNOW this stuff, or if I just haven’t read the right histories, but this book was shocking, heartbreaking, and inspiring. I had no idea about the treatment that these POWs received at the hands of the Nazis—it was literally the same as the concentration camp victims. Also, the descriptions of the battle are terrifying. Chris has done an excellent job telling a thrilling and suspenseful story, and clearly he wouldn’t have been able to without the willingness of the survivors to relive their memories. What hit me so hard was that this was all true. There are several instances where Roddie Edmonds’ calm leadership saved lives, and more than one where he risked his life—with a literal gun to his head—to keep his men safe. I hate to give more details and spoil the story—but I was riveted. I tore through this book in one night, unable to put it down because I had to know what happened. The bravery of these men is incredible—the ones who fought, the ones who died, the ones who survived the POW camp. The ones who shared their stories, their willingness to go over what had to be horribly difficult memories in order to bring Roddie Edmonds’ heroism to light is immensely brave as well. It’s nice to know there are still real heroes out there!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Schuyler Wallace

    This war story is among the best I’ve read for its sincerity, graphic descriptions, and lessons as remembered by its aged survivors. Chris Edmonds, a Tennessee pastor, prompted by a daughter who wanted to write a school paper about her paternal grandfather, realized he knew very little about his own World War II veteran father. It started a frenzied search through his father’s journals, hunting down living buddies of his father’s from the war, traveling many miles to interview them, and putting This war story is among the best I’ve read for its sincerity, graphic descriptions, and lessons as remembered by its aged survivors. Chris Edmonds, a Tennessee pastor, prompted by a daughter who wanted to write a school paper about her paternal grandfather, realized he knew very little about his own World War II veteran father. It started a frenzied search through his father’s journals, hunting down living buddies of his father’s from the war, traveling many miles to interview them, and putting it all together into a tribute to his father, Roddie Edmonds. The author perused brief journal notes in his father’s own handwriting. There were bare facts, terse descriptions, and fragmented sentences, written in personal shorthand and scribbled in haste. He knew his father was captured by the Nazis and sent to brutal POW camps, but it was the stories he was told by living survivors that really brought home the fact that his father was a revered hero, all because of two episodes. In both, he had defied brutal camp supervisors, his bold defiance saving the lives of his fellow prisoners while almost certainly inviting his own death. Refusing to follow orders in a prison camp run by maniacal Nazi thugs was a sure way to get executed. Two times Roddie, the leader of the prisoner group based on his rank and seniority, stood firmly in front a an infuriated Nazi madman and refused to follow his orders, once with the officer’s Luger pistol aimed at his forehead. His men stood defiantly behind him while secretly fearing what would happen to him. As it turns out, nothing happened, either to him or his men. The biggest part of the book tells the frightening story of war, the fighting, bombing, shelling, and hand-to-hand combat and overwhelming terror of facing death at every turn. The stench, hunger, and debilitating cold are constant companions. The GIs are finally overrun and thousands of prisoners are force-marched to inhospitable prison camps that are hellholes with no comfort or food, and brutal assaults are constantly rained upon the hapless men. Through it all, Edmonds discovers that his father, Roddie, is an inspiration to all and a spiritual leader that the men are devoted to. Edmonds tells a heartwarming story amid the horrors of war and imprisonment. He goes on to give updates of their life after they are freed and return home. I found the book to be inspirational and heartwarming. Real heroes are those who are behind the spotlight as they perform their heroic acts. So it was with Roddie Edmonds.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Julianne Bailey

    Chris Edmonds discovers, in serendipitous fashion, that his father was a war hero during his time in a Nazi POW camp. He sets out to discover the role his father played in saving the lives of Jewish POWs and it’s last impact years later. Roddie’s story was fascinating, and there were quite a few historical facts mentioned in this book about other areas of the war that were new to me. The first tow or three chapters were fairly clumsily written and I felt like they were disjointed. But then the Chris Edmonds discovers, in serendipitous fashion, that his father was a war hero during his time in a Nazi POW camp. He sets out to discover the role his father played in saving the lives of Jewish POWs and it’s last impact years later. Roddie’s story was fascinating, and there were quite a few historical facts mentioned in this book about other areas of the war that were new to me. The first tow or three chapters were fairly clumsily written and I felt like they were disjointed. But then the story picks up, the writing improves, and I was riveted, especially for the last half. I do wish there had been more follow up for certain characters. I felt like Roddie’s actions were incredibly impressive and this book is so sincere in how it handles the story. I enjoyed the scope of the book, it’s point of view, and the story. Thank you Netgalley for a free digital advanced copy!

  4. 4 out of 5

    David

    When I started this book I was not sure that I wanted to finish it. The book begins with the writer's discovery of his father's service in WWII. The writer went into detail about how he found out about his father's war experiences. Like most WWII veterans, his father never spoke of his time in the war. However, once the book moved into a detailed account of his father, Roddie's, time in service, I was not able to put it down. The book is a good example of a collection of personal narratives of When I started this book I was not sure that I wanted to finish it. The book begins with the writer's discovery of his father's service in WWII. The writer went into detail about how he found out about his father's war experiences. Like most WWII veterans, his father never spoke of his time in the war. However, once the book moved into a detailed account of his father, Roddie's, time in service, I was not able to put it down. The book is a good example of a collection of personal narratives of those who served with Roddie. The writer spent months tracking down those who knew Roddie and preserving their stories. To a man, they remembered him as a great leader. One who had courage born of a deep faith. On three occasions during Roddie's time a POW, his faith strengthened him and those who served under his command. He serves as a great example of a common man who acted in an extraordinary way when confronted with a desperate situation. The authors last paragraphs sum up the book: "I guess that's what's most remarkable about my journey to discover what my father did in the Second World War--the realization that any one of us has the untapped potential to do something incredibly courageous. Not a day passes for me now when I don't marvel at this epiphany: we all have the potential to change the world simply by standing up for what's right." Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for providing an advance reader copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Shirley

    A testament of faith I loved the passages from the word of God that Chris used throughout his book. The story of his father Roddie Edmonds and his father's fellow soldiers was an inspirational story. It was a story of survival and a story of faith. A story of a soldier that put his own life on the line to save the lives of others. It was a story of life as a soldier at the front and life in POW camps. It told the story of the savagery of the Nazi Army and the faith and determination of the capture A testament of faith I loved the passages from the word of God that Chris used throughout his book. The story of his father Roddie Edmonds and his father's fellow soldiers was an inspirational story. It was a story of survival and a story of faith. A story of a soldier that put his own life on the line to save the lives of others. It was a story of life as a soldier at the front and life in POW camps. It told the story of the savagery of the Nazi Army and the faith and determination of the capture U.S. Forces. How he was responsible for saving over 200 American Jewish soldiers and later 1200 American servicemen from the death march as the war was ending. It is a testimony to all the POWs he served with that they kept their dignity and helped each other, the strong helping the week. One of my favorite parts was the Christmas in the boxcar. They were locked in a small boxcar, cold, hungry, thirsty and tired, but somehow they still were able to celebrate Christmas by praying and singing hymns. I was impressed that after the war they went on with their lives and lived good lives preferring to put the war behind them and go on with life. It did give them a new appreciation of everything we all take for granted. Little things like a cup of coffee, a good meal, and big things like freedom and a loving family. Their faith was tested and they never lost their faith. I enjoyed reading this book and the information it contained. Books are often written about the war and the concentration camps, however, fewer are written about the U.S. Soldier serving in German POW camps. I would definitely recommend this book.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Debra Pawlak

    I received an advance reading copy of this book from NetGalley in return for a fair review. When I started reading this book, I wasn't sure I was going to like it, but it turned out to be one of the finest books that I have read so far this year. As soon as I realized that Chris Edmonds was writing an extraordinary tribute to his father, I was all in. Roddie Edmonds was the kind of man you would be privileged to have known--a good father, a good provider and a man of faith. It was that faith I received an advance reading copy of this book from NetGalley in return for a fair review. When I started reading this book, I wasn't sure I was going to like it, but it turned out to be one of the finest books that I have read so far this year. As soon as I realized that Chris Edmonds was writing an extraordinary tribute to his father, I was all in. Roddie Edmonds was the kind of man you would be privileged to have known--a good father, a good provider and a man of faith. It was that faith that saw him through his darkest hour when he was a POW at a German prison camp during World War II. He never really talked about his experiences, but after his death, when Chris decided to research what happened, the amazing events unfolded. Roddie Edmonds was a hero in every sense of the word and his story needed to be told. He not only stood up to the sadistic officers that ran the POW camp, but put his men first and did what he could to save each and every one of them. He was only 25 years old with more than 1,000 men looking up to him for leadership and he did not disappoint. He prayed with them, inspired them to hang on and led by example. I would like to personally thank Chris Edmonds for introducing me to his father. I will never forget the bravery of this real-life hero. I recommend this book to anyone who is interested in WWII, The Greatest Generation and/or the human spirit. Thank you, Roddie Edmonds, for your service and for the lives you saved. It is men like you who still give us hope.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Candy

    Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for an advance copy of this book in return for an honest review. No Surrender tells the story of Roddie Edmonds, a soldier from Tennessee who is plunked down into hell on earth, Stalag IXA, a Nazi prisoner of war camp. Roddie’s son, Chris, begins a look into his father’s past to help his daughter with a school assignment. What he discovers is a man who lived his life according to one of his favorite scripture passages: Greater love hath no man than this, Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for an advance copy of this book in return for an honest review. No Surrender tells the story of Roddie Edmonds, a soldier from Tennessee who is plunked down into hell on earth, Stalag IXA, a Nazi prisoner of war camp. Roddie’s son, Chris, begins a look into his father’s past to help his daughter with a school assignment. What he discovers is a man who lived his life according to one of his favorite scripture passages: Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends (John 15:13). Chris begins with his father’s wartime diaries, which are cryptic at best. They are not diaries in the strict sense, some entries consisting of just a single word. This leads him to search for men who served with and under his father. Through interviews, he learns what happened in the camp. I won’t spoil your reading by telling you, but it is a story of courage, bravery, faith, inspiration and righteousness that will restore your faith in humanity. This is a powerful book, and reading it will make you understand why it is called The Greatest Generation. The young men who lived these horrors went on to become ordinary people and, as the author points out, an ordinary life lived well is, indeed, extraordinary. www.candysplanet.wordpress.com

  8. 5 out of 5

    Jean

    No Surrender by Christopher Edmonds is a wonderful tribute, written by a son, for his Dad, Roddie. Chris knew his Father was a loving God-fearing man but did not know much about his years during the war. He researched and found this story by the men that knew his Father well. What an amazing man he was! This story was written very well. One of the reasons I chose this book, the writer and his Dad lived here in my area. It was interesting to read about history back in the day by a writer that No Surrender by Christopher Edmonds is a wonderful tribute, written by a son, for his Dad, Roddie. Chris knew his Father was a loving God-fearing man but did not know much about his years during the war. He researched and found this story by the men that knew his Father well. What an amazing man he was! This story was written very well. One of the reasons I chose this book, the writer and his Dad lived here in my area. It was interesting to read about history back in the day by a writer that researched well. It's a great book. Thank you so much, Christopher Edmonds; Douglas Century, the Publisher, and NetGalley for giving me the opportunity to read this book.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Marilyn

    I received an advanced copy of this book from Netgalley. I wasn't prepared to like this book so much. But it was great. If you want to know more about what life for the infantry soldier was like, read this book. If you want to discover how ordinary men can do extraordinary things when needed, read this book. If you want to read about an offspring's discovery that a parent was much, much more than what they experienced in their day-to-day life, read this book. You will not be disappointed and I received an advanced copy of this book from Netgalley. I wasn't prepared to like this book so much. But it was great. If you want to know more about what life for the infantry soldier was like, read this book. If you want to discover how ordinary men can do extraordinary things when needed, read this book. If you want to read about an offspring's discovery that a parent was much, much more than what they experienced in their day-to-day life, read this book. You will not be disappointed and amazed at how quickly the book reads.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Maggie Gust

    No Surrender – by Chris Edmonds and Douglas Century – HarperCollins Publisher 2019 Most of us never really know our parents’ true characters because they are the center of our world from the moment we enter it, dazzling us with their love. They introduce us to life itself, fulfill our needs and teach us how to navigate in the world. Recognizing them as individual human beings is rare because we simply do not get the opportunity to observe them in the moments that shaped them. No Surrender is the No Surrender – by Chris Edmonds and Douglas Century – HarperCollins Publisher 2019 Most of us never really know our parents’ true characters because they are the center of our world from the moment we enter it, dazzling us with their love. They introduce us to life itself, fulfill our needs and teach us how to navigate in the world. Recognizing them as individual human beings is rare because we simply do not get the opportunity to observe them in the moments that shaped them. No Surrender is the story of how Chris Edmonds discovered his father Rodney Edmonds’ uncommonly sterling character. As a very young man, Rodney, aka “Roddie” enlisted in the US Army nine months before the Pearl Harbor attack on December 7, 1941. By January 1943, he has been promoted four times and is master sergeant communications chief. Two months later he is training some of the men he will later serve with at the Battle of the Bulge and during their containment in POW camps in Germany. Chris Edmonds’ journey to his father’s past started with discovering a cigar box containing Roddie’s diary from the war years, prompted by his daughter Lauren’s desire to write about her grandfather for a school project. Like millions of others who fought in that war, Roddie had put away reminders of that experience and determined to live in the present. Combat had taught them there is no promise of tomorrow and your next breath could be your last, so appreciate NOW. While Googling his father’s rank and name, expecting to be taken to a national war archive of some kind, Pastor Edmonds found instead a story about Richard Nixon. The former president was being shunned from buying an apartment in NYC and an attorney named Lester Tanner stepped in and sold his 12-room town house to Mr. Nixon, despite sharp political differences between the two men. In the article about his actions, Mr. Tanner mentioned that he was inspired by a brave officer, Roddie Edmonds, whose defiance of a POW camp commandant saved the lives of many men. Despite this bombshell revelation, it was a few years before Chris actually focused on discovering his father’s wartime experience – life was busy! In the mid 1980s, he met with Lester Tanner in New York. Chris was stunned to hear Mr. Tanner declare that in his opinion Roddie Edmonds should get the Congressional Medal of Honor. What follows is a fascinating story of the teenaged and very young adult men who placed their lives in jeopardy during the Second World War. No Surrender covers not only Roddie Edmonds’ story but those of the men he served with. This book should not be dismissed as just another WWII story because it is much more than that. It goes into depth about the men’s six-month experience in Europe – which seems much longer, given everything they endured – and gives more details than I have read elsewhere about the horrifying atrocities committed by German soldiers against the Allies, especially American GIs. It also extensively covers their recovery after their camp was liberated by Patton’s Third Army, the first POW camp liberated by the Allied Forces. The authors detail the refeeding of men who were 60 or more pounds underweight. Well-meaning people allowing them to gorge themselves on goodies learned that too much of a good thing could prove deadly. In subsequent POW and concentration camp liberations, they knew to limit food intake initially and concentrate on physical examinations and documenting experience, in preparation for war crime charges. No more platters of doughnuts served to starved men. For his uncommon bravery in defying the German camp commandant not once but twice, Roddie Edmonds was eventually honored by Israel as Righteous Among the Nations, being the first American nominated for saving American Jews. Righteous are non-Jews who risk themselves in order to help a Jew. I don’t want to say in this review what Roddie did – it would ruin it for future readers of this book. Even without his WWII heroism, Roddie’s story is a great read – one of the millions of his generation who just got on with life despite the horrors he encountered in his young life and always chose to do what he saw as the right thing based on his faith in God. I gave this book five stars because it is extremely well written and reads more like a thriller than a biography. Despite all the books I have read about World War II, I learned much in No Surrender. The authors’ detailed accounts of daily life for the American POWs in Germany were startling to me. A little more than half the book is dedicated to that. It is stunning to me that they could survive that, but then they came back home and readjusted to “normal” life. They did not seek nor expect high praise for their service, just did what they saw as their duty.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Helga Cohen

    Edmond’s book is an inspirational account of his father Roddie Edmonds and his courageous acts during World War II.I was introduced this book as part of our Jewish Film Festival occurring for the last 2 weeks and this book with the film “Footsteps of My Father” were its conclusion. Pastor Edmonds introduced the film and spoke about the book on Veterans Day, 11/11/19. Pastor Edmonds knew very little about his father’s actions during the war growing up in Knoxville, TN. It has been very typical of Edmond’s book is an inspirational account of his father Roddie Edmonds and his courageous acts during World War II.I was introduced this book as part of our Jewish Film Festival occurring for the last 2 weeks and this book with the film “Footsteps of My Father” were its conclusion. Pastor Edmonds introduced the film and spoke about the book on Veterans Day, 11/11/19. Pastor Edmonds knew very little about his father’s actions during the war growing up in Knoxville, TN. It has been very typical of the Greatest Generation to not speak about the events of WWII. Pastor Edmonds decided to find out about his father by following a trail of a few clues. In this book, we learn that Master Sergeant Roddie Edmonds and his boys fought at the Battle of the Bulge and were captured by the Nazis in Dec 1944. They were first deported to Bad Orb in cattle cars and then to StalagIXA as prisoners of war near Ziegenheim Germany. The experience at the camp were extremely horrific but he never wavered to the Nazi brutality especially towards the Jewish American GI’s. It was due to his leadership and bravery that he saved the lives of 200 Jewish GI’s. When they wanted to separate out the Jews from the Gentiles, all 1200 soldiers stood together at Roddie’s request and said “We are all Jew”. They would have to kill them all but that the war was ending and they would be implicated for war crimes before the world. And in late March 1945, after 3 months of captivity, the 1200 soldiers were to be forced on the final catastrophic march out of the camp at the end of the war so the Nazis could escape capture. The Nazis relented and escaped leaving Roddie and the 1200 GI”s to remain in the camp until liberated by General George Patton who rescued them a few days later. Roddie Edmonds stood up to the Nazis with valor at the expense of possibly losing his life. Edmonds provides incredible and startling details of major events during World WarII and US Army initiatives including the Battle of the Bulge, the Massacre of Malmedy and other facts with pictures throughout the book. It was also quite incredible how he found fellow soldiers who knew his father and who could fill in the details and provide testimony of their POW experiences. This lead to finally getting Christopher Edmonds father to get recognition for what he did during the war. He received a Medal of Honor and on June 6, 2015, the anniversary of D-Day, Yad Vashem, Israel’s National Holocaust Memorial, awarded him the Righteous among Nations Award. President Obama spoke in commemoration of him at the Embassy of Israel Washington, DC on January 27, 2016 on International Holocaust Remembrance Day and 71st anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz and spoke at the Righteous among the Nations Award where Roddie Edmonds was honored for his bravery in saving Jewish GI’s. There have been only 4 other Americans to receive this honor. This was a truly inspirational story of how one man’s courage saved many lives. To Roddie, it was just the right thing to do. President Trump, mentioned him yesterday in his Veterans Day speech in NYC and Pastor Edmond’s daughter stood up in honor of her father (and also a surviving Jewish GI, Lester Tanner was recognized) while Pastor Edmonds was in Columbia, SC to speak to us last night and show the film and then go to Fort Jackson where his father and the soldiers trained to get ready for the War. I highly recommend this book about a true American hero. It is fast moving and does not read like a history.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Jena Henry

    There are many World War II memoirs listed on Amazon and Goodreads- and a Google search will have you scrambling through 112 million results. There probably aren’t millions of memoirs, but I am thankful that there are many, because each person who served on the Allied side has an amazing story to tell. And these stories must be told soon, while we still have the veterans or their families to tell them. Christopher Edmond’s search for the details of his father’s World War II service is a uniquely There are many World War II memoirs listed on Amazon and Goodreads- and a Google search will have you scrambling through 112 million results. There probably aren’t millions of memoirs, but I am thankful that there are many, because each person who served on the Allied side has an amazing story to tell. And these stories must be told soon, while we still have the veterans or their families to tell them. Christopher Edmond’s search for the details of his father’s World War II service is a uniquely positive and uplifting read, even though the details are harsh and horrifying. The book is written in a clear and friendly style and is a pleasure to read. The author recalls that his Dad Roddie was scrupulously fair and was known as a “square shooter”. But his Dad also had a fun side and would light up a room and warm everyone’s heart with fun and laughter. Roddie was a sincere Christian and ended family prayers by saying, “Lord, help us help others who can’t help themselves.” He loved to sing hymns in church and coach his son’s little league team. Growing up, the author had no clue about his Dad’s service during World War II. Like many men who returned from the war, Roddie wanted to get on with his life and have a home and family. The author did know that his Dad had served as a Master Sergeant in the US Army, 422nd Regiment of the 106th Infantry Division- the Golden Lions. It wasn’t until his daughter had to do a school project, that he and his family began to look closely through his Dad’s war memorabilia and study his Dad’s diaries from 1944-45. The author felt a strong pull to search for the men who had served with his father, or their remaining families, to learn more about his Dad’s experiences during the Battle of the Bulge and subsequent capture by the Germans and imprisonment in a POW camp. Fortunately, some of Roddie’s Army buddies were still alive and the author met with them and finally heard the grim details and bravery of his father. Roddie’s service to the Army and duty to his men of all faiths teach us that one person can always make a difference. And that’s why the author is sharing the story of his father’s message around the world, a message of the transformative power of love, selfless sacrifice and moral courage. Roddie was a secure, grounded and prepared young man, and he was able with God’s help to do the impossible. The story of Roddie’s months overseas and his son’s search to learn about it 75 years later is incredible. Master Sergeant Roddie Waring Edmonds of Knoxville, Tennessee would be posthumously highly honored for his World War II heroism, in 2015. He saved 1500 of his men, men who were in their early twenties at the time and who would go home to live long lives filled with careers, marriage, children, grand-children and great-grandchildren. I thank all of the men and women who have served in the Armed Forces and I salute the “Greatest Generation.” I highly recommend this book. Thanks to NetGalley and Harper Collins Publishers Harper One for a digital advanced review copy. This is my honest review.

  13. 5 out of 5

    David Hill

    Many WW II vets were reticent to discuss their experiences in the war. Chris Edmonds' father was one of those: he didn't tell his family what he did, saw, and felt during the war. He died decades before his son started researching those events. What Roddie Edmonds did was heroic and had far-reaching effects. Roddie Edmonds' story is a powerful one. His deeds made the world a better place. The author is a pastor and clearly driven by a faith in God. This shows in the early and late chapters of the Many WW II vets were reticent to discuss their experiences in the war. Chris Edmonds' father was one of those: he didn't tell his family what he did, saw, and felt during the war. He died decades before his son started researching those events. What Roddie Edmonds did was heroic and had far-reaching effects. Roddie Edmonds' story is a powerful one. His deeds made the world a better place. The author is a pastor and clearly driven by a faith in God. This shows in the early and late chapters of the book, where he talks of God doing things and God making things happen, as if man is without agency. I think it's great if someone's religion makes them a better person, but insisting that some event was the will of God rather than the result of the efforts of a man, or just from coincidence rubs me the wrong way. An example is late in the book when the opinion is expressed that the world would be better if it was remade a Christian world. I find that ironic, given that the heroic efforts of the author's father were made to save Jews from a nation who had "Gott mit uns" on the belt buckles of their soldiers. A minor nit-pick about the book: many photographs are included. It would be an easy and natural thing to put the captions and credits for the photos adjacent to the photos. Instead, somebody decided to have all the info about the pictures in small print on one page at the front of the book.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer

    In "No Surrender," Christopher Edmonds and Douglas Century tell the story of Master Sergeant Roddie Edmonds, an ordinary soldier who exhibited extraordinary courage during WW2. Most people haven't heard of this man, but his actions saved over 100 Jewish soldiers in Stalag IXB, and 2,000 people are alive today because of Roddie's bravery and wisdom. Roddie's story has also helped people stand up courageously for others and confront blind prejudice and evil ideologies. As I read this book, I In "No Surrender," Christopher Edmonds and Douglas Century tell the story of Master Sergeant Roddie Edmonds, an ordinary soldier who exhibited extraordinary courage during WW2. Most people haven't heard of this man, but his actions saved over 100 Jewish soldiers in Stalag IXB, and 2,000 people are alive today because of Roddie's bravery and wisdom. Roddie's story has also helped people stand up courageously for others and confront blind prejudice and evil ideologies. As I read this book, I appreciated its historical content and the many details about the war, particularly the Battle of the Bulge and prison camps. Chris also shares the gospel message clearly as he describes his father's faith and how it impacted Roddie's life and the lives of his fellow soldiers. According to Chris, Roddie was willing to die to save Jewish men under his command because he believed a Jewish man - Jesus Christ - had died to save him. The narrative does jump between characters and historical accounts, though, which is confusing at times. Also, the pictures in the Kindle version are too small to see clearly and appear unlabeled. Overall, this book is one I would highly recommend to readers who are interested in WW2, courage and the difference ordinary people can make in the world. "There have been times when you must take a calculated risk, however perilous, to stand up and do the right thing for yourself and those for whom you have responsibility." I want to live like Roddie Edmonds.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Marcia Meakim

    No Surrender tells the story of Roddie Edmonds, a World War II soldier who bravely saved the lives of many soldiers in a Nazi POW camp after being captured in the Battle of the Bulge. Roddie was so humble that he chose to not share his bravery with others, even his own family, which is almost unheard of in today’s society. He raised his family and after his death his son read the journals he kept while in the service and was shocked to learn what his father had done. He proceeded to interview No Surrender tells the story of Roddie Edmonds, a World War II soldier who bravely saved the lives of many soldiers in a Nazi POW camp after being captured in the Battle of the Bulge. Roddie was so humble that he chose to not share his bravery with others, even his own family, which is almost unheard of in today’s society. He raised his family and after his death his son read the journals he kept while in the service and was shocked to learn what his father had done. He proceeded to interview his father’s peers who were still living and researched available records. He wrote the book using the information he had gleaned from sources available. It tells a gut wrenching story of life as a POW. While I have read many others who seemed to suffer much more horrifically in POW camps, this showcased the bravery of all who were in this Camp for several months. I found myself wondering how his dad felt about what Christopher had done, seeing as he never felt the need to share it himself. He seemed like a very humble but great leader in the circumstances he found himself. Many thanks to Christopher Edmonds and NetGalley for affording me the opportunity to read this ARC of a very soon to be published book.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Hana Correa

    I always love WW11 era stories, both fiction and true life, which is why I asked for an early copy of No Surrender. Inside it’s pages we are introduced to the remarkable accomplishments of Roddie Edmunds, a Methodist country boy from a small Tennessee town. Roddie was a special individual who was born with a moral compass that was unwavering in its ability to point at what is good and right in the world. Christopher Edmunds, Roddie’s son, has compiled a rich history of Roddie’s remarkable I always love WW11 era stories, both fiction and true life, which is why I asked for an early copy of No Surrender. Inside it’s pages we are introduced to the remarkable accomplishments of Roddie Edmunds, a Methodist country boy from a small Tennessee town. Roddie was a special individual who was born with a moral compass that was unwavering in its ability to point at what is good and right in the world. Christopher Edmunds, Roddie’s son, has compiled a rich history of Roddie’s remarkable achievements in the face of insurmountable odds. From his childhood days as the youngest boy in a family left empty by the death of his mother to his heroic achievements as a POW in Germany facing some of the worst Nazi’s history has ever produced, we get to know this remarkable person. Ever humble, Roddie never revealed much of his life during WW11, and many of the richest descriptions of the hell these POW’s survived is supplied through extensive interviews with those who knew and served with Roddie. Definitely recommend for anybody to read, but will definitely appeal to WW11 history buffs. Thank you to Netgalley for the advanced copy.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Emily

    3.5 stars. A daughter's desire to write a paper on her late grandfather's WWII experience, prompted a search of journals and interviews that helped her father come to know his dad as a war hero. Two things stood out to me while reading this book. First, what gives one the courage to stand up for what's right and good in the face of such evil? I love reading about people doing extraordinary things and I always wonder what brought them to the point where they could make that difficult choice in 3.5 stars. A daughter's desire to write a paper on her late grandfather's WWII experience, prompted a search of journals and interviews that helped her father come to know his dad as a war hero. Two things stood out to me while reading this book. First, what gives one the courage to stand up for what's right and good in the face of such evil? I love reading about people doing extraordinary things and I always wonder what brought them to the point where they could make that difficult choice in that moment. As a leader and POW, Roddie Edmonds had and took the opportunity to make heroic decisions that saved lives. The second thing that stood out to me was how in the world did his family not know about this? I just can't fathom going through such an experience and not telling your wife, your children, your friends. I'm sure it is a generational thing, we talk about too much, while those before us learned to keep the past in the past (their way of dealing with trauma). It just makes me sad to think of all the stories that went to the grave without being shared. I'm glad this family could discover this story while there were still survivors alive to share it.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Boone Family

    No Surrender poignantly and accurately recounts not just one man’s experience in World War 2, but a number of players from which the author was able to interview and gain valuable information. I’ve read many holocaust survivor stories and am fascinated with the human will to survive such horrendous conditions. No Surrender takes the reader into the Battle of the Bulge with clarity that even my right-brained mind could follow the strategies of the enemy and the chilling losses of the Allies. It No Surrender poignantly and accurately recounts not just one man’s experience in World War 2, but a number of players from which the author was able to interview and gain valuable information. I’ve read many holocaust survivor stories and am fascinated with the human will to survive such horrendous conditions. No Surrender takes the reader into the Battle of the Bulge with clarity that even my right-brained mind could follow the strategies of the enemy and the chilling losses of the Allies. It was a biographical sketch of Roddie Edmonds, but written well as a drama played out. I received an un-proofed copy of No Surrender from the publisher via NetGalley and as such, there were some editing still needing to be done. I found that the first three-quarters of the book were well written, but the last quarter felt a little clunky as the author told the post war stories of the other survivors of the horrendous Nazi POW camp experience. All in all, I highly recommend this book, but be aware that there are some hard and violent scenes in battle and the camp as well as a smattering of foul language.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Mary F

    I may give it a whirl, but do see what Mish means about "turgid" from the sample as well as the presentation Christopher gave in 2017 (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iWne5...). I'm not quite sure his father would approve of all the attention-seeking and characterizing the main event as one where his father single-handedly saved the Jewish comrades when he couldn't have done it if any of the others were pushed to a place where they decided to act in opposition to Edmonds' decision to risk their I may give it a whirl, but do see what Mish means about "turgid" from the sample as well as the presentation Christopher gave in 2017 (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iWne5...). I'm not quite sure his father would approve of all the attention-seeking and characterizing the main event as one where his father single-handedly saved the Jewish comrades when he couldn't have done it if any of the others were pushed to a place where they decided to act in opposition to Edmonds' decision to risk their well-being. And it needn't take someone who was a rabid anti-Semite or even the average bigot or someone with anti-Judaism tendencies to decide to inform on Jewish comrades. There's also the obvious truth that the end-result could not be achieved without the decision of the commandant against any number of responses, from as simple as repeating the exercise on more than one occasion or offering up and various unpleasant disincentives or positive incentives to anyone who wanted to anonymously inform on someone to save himself, whether or not they were Jewish (unfortunately, all the person would need to know is whether the person was circumcised to have a good candidate to save his own skin or obtain other benefits from ratting out someone else).[1] At any rate, I'm glad that I came across the story again and saw that a book was produced. The documentary reminded me to donate to the Jewish Foundation for the Righteous on behalf of Franco Isman in honor of Don Luigi Re. [1] The commandant would've had every motivation to do more than make a single threat and point a gun at someone's head. He'd have a very much more immediate and serious concern than Edmonds' pointing out the possibility of war crimes charges down the road, and this is why I doubt whomever's tale that the commandant "blanched" at the remark. The commandant would be very much immediately afraid about being tried and executed by way of his own actions-inaction. As such, I'm not convinced commandant wasn't putting on a big show and liked to have an excuse to give in to his personal inclinations - the show would be to save face as best he could without actually killing Edmonds or any other American. It seems no one much less Christopher considered that the commandant of the camp could've decided to undertake successful identification of Jewish soldiers. A person in this position wouldn't even need to be a "madman" to act in his own interest and pursue a course where, for instance, he'd say "Fine. If you're all Jewish, everyone who isn't circumcised is in for a surprise procedure. Circumcision is not at all fun as an adult, and you could easily bleed to death or die from complications." Or he could skip that nastiness and declare that all circumcised men would be presumed Jewish unless he was somehow satisfied such was not the case. Given approx. 50% of U.S. men born in 1925 were circumcised (and the percentage would've been lower if born before 1925), something tells me that however many of Edmonds' subordinates would've had little or no compunction about giving up Jewish soldiers if it meant avoiding circumstances where they'd be separated from the group and face an even more precarious situation and certain death.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Allison

    The story of one man uncovering his late father’s wartime experiences through his diaries and interviews with fellow soldiers would be interesting to anyone fascinated by World War II or family history. It is also a story of deep faith, faith that sustained through the worst of times and uplifted and endured long after overcoming adversity. If you were moved by the story of Oskar Schindler, you will find this memoir equally powerful. How one very young, inexperienced sargeant displayed The story of one man uncovering his late father’s wartime experiences through his diaries and interviews with fellow soldiers would be interesting to anyone fascinated by World War II or family history. It is also a story of deep faith, faith that sustained through the worst of times and uplifted and endured long after overcoming adversity. If you were moved by the story of Oskar Schindler, you will find this memoir equally powerful. How one very young, inexperienced sargeant displayed incredible bravery and protected an entire camp of American POWs through the worst conditions of internment in a German prison camp is a remarkable story. Add to that the moral courage he showed in defending the Jewish soldiers in that camp, and you will see how the efforts of one individual can change the course of history. One warning. Your progress in finishing this book will be impeded as you stop frequently to wipe your eyes.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Isabelle

    No Surrender by Christopher Edmonds and Douglas Century is a gripping historical memoir like no other I have read before. Books about World War II are available everywhere you turn right now but this is one you should really pick up and read. After his passing, Edmonds goes on a journey to find out all he can about his father, who was a prisoner of war of the Nazis during World War II. This is a look into the experiences of not only Edmond's father but also those who he served with and whose No Surrender by Christopher Edmonds and Douglas Century is a gripping historical memoir like no other I have read before. Books about World War II are available everywhere you turn right now but this is one you should really pick up and read. After his passing, Edmonds goes on a journey to find out all he can about his father, who was a prisoner of war of the Nazis during World War II. This is a look into the experiences of not only Edmond's father but also those who he served with and whose lives he saved. He grants us a look into the life of a remarkable man, a hero, that lived his life not only for himself, but in the service of others without looking for recognition for doing so. I highly recommend this read!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Becky

    This is a non-fiction memoir of a son for his father. Chris Edmonds knew his father was a hero, but until a school project prompted him to look closer, he never understood the full extent of what his dad experienced. These new revelations prompt Chris to look closer and take a journey to find out not just about his father, but about the experiences and events of soldiers in WWII. This book is hard to read in parts, because it is hard to accept how horribly mankind can act, however, the idea of This is a non-fiction memoir of a son for his father. Chris Edmonds knew his father was a hero, but until a school project prompted him to look closer, he never understood the full extent of what his dad experienced. These new revelations prompt Chris to look closer and take a journey to find out not just about his father, but about the experiences and events of soldiers in WWII. This book is hard to read in parts, because it is hard to accept how horribly mankind can act, however, the idea of redemption and growth after tragedy runs through the story. I am in a reading slump with WWII-era books, so I think I might have enjoyed this book more at a different time in my life.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Tiffany

    No Surrender is a touching story of a son's posthumous discovery of his father's bravery and captivity by the Natzis during WWII. Chris Edmonds is compelled to know more of his father's war experiences, stories that he shared little of during life, after reading his father's diaries. Traveling throughout the US and across the sea to retrace his father's steps, Chris tries to imagine the trials and trauma that his father, Roddie Edmonds, experienced as he fought alongside his friends during the No Surrender is a touching story of a son's posthumous discovery of his father's bravery and captivity by the Natzis during WWII. Chris Edmonds is compelled to know more of his father's war experiences, stories that he shared little of during life, after reading his father's diaries. Traveling throughout the US and across the sea to retrace his father's steps, Chris tries to imagine the trials and trauma that his father, Roddie Edmonds, experienced as he fought alongside his friends during the Battle of the Bulge and spent time as a POW in a Nazi camp. Chris's admiration and respect is a reminder to us all that there are unsung heroes in every war.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Corgi

    I really liked and enjoyed No Surrender by Christopher Edmonds and Douglas Century. I enjoy reading about WWII and this non-fiction book is excellent. It is the story about Roddie Edmonds and his experiences during WWII. C Edmonds was not aware of the heroism of his father during WWII. After his father passed away and finding his father's WWII journal, C Edmonds decided to research his father's time spent in the war. C Edmonds met many men that were stationed with his father and was able to put I really liked and enjoyed No Surrender by Christopher Edmonds and Douglas Century. I enjoy reading about WWII and this non-fiction book is excellent. It is the story about Roddie Edmonds and his experiences during WWII. C Edmonds was not aware of the heroism of his father during WWII. After his father passed away and finding his father's WWII journal, C Edmonds decided to research his father's time spent in the war. C Edmonds met many men that were stationed with his father and was able to put the story together. I would highly recommend this book to readers who like: non-fiction WWII stories, stories about heroism, and stories about learning about one's family.

  25. 4 out of 5

    BonLivre

    Thank you to the publisher and #GalleyMatch for an advanced copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. The novel shared a unique act of heroism during WWII. I particularly found the color around the build-up and training of US forces before the war, as well as the state of the American South during that same time, very interesting. As with any war story this is not for the faint of heart, but the harshness of the facts was counterbalanced nicely with the author’s honesty about the Thank you to the publisher and #GalleyMatch for an advanced copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. The novel shared a unique act of heroism during WWII. I particularly found the color around the build-up and training of US forces before the war, as well as the state of the American South during that same time, very interesting. As with any war story this is not for the faint of heart, but the harshness of the facts was counterbalanced nicely with the author’s honesty about the importance of exploring family history.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Elaine

    Thank you net galley for the advance reader copy of this novel. This was a factual WWII novel about Americans in a German POW camp. This book was filled with heart and Mae me want to find out more..... particularly the British and French POWs that did march out and not stay behind. The author did a superb job of telling the story without bogging down with too many facts or with too much emotion. Well done and I'm so glad to have read this!!!

  27. 4 out of 5

    Rachel

    A powerful story how one decision instantly saved 200 American Jewish GI's that then led to thousands of people given the chance to live. I'm privileged to know Chris and to have been along for the journey to publishing a book about his father in a small way. Even if I didn't know Chris, this would be a story I'd want to read. If you're a fan of the Greatest Generation, you'll want to check out this book.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Joe

    I found this book to be a heartfelt and admiring story of the author's father. I also thought that it did a great job showing the sheer agony and gruesome experiences a lot of soldiers faced during the final stages of WWII. This is shown in the hellish combat that the troops faced during the Battle of the Bulge and the degrading conditions that allied POWs faced in Nazi prison camps. This book is just a great story about selflessness and perseverance.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Mich

    After two attempts to get into this book, I gave up. While it might be a terrific story about a man’s exploits during WWII and his selflessness in helping and protecting other POWs, the son’s style of writing was self-centered and turgid. I probably should have just skipped the first 80 pages and skimmed to the end, but this didn’t seem worth it. Sorry, Net Galley- thanks for the book.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Nissa

    Truly one of the many, many WWII heroes. This was an excellent book and a well-written historical gem. It has a great balance between historical fact, and storytelling. Anyone interested in historical autobiographical accounts of WWII needs to read this book. My heart broke for all the men who gave their lives for us! These war heroes were truly, THE GREATEST GENERATION!

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